The funding is made possible through BC Hydro's Power Smart Partners Industrial Program. The program offers financial incentives and resources to help industrial customers, including those in the pulp and paper, mining, solid wood, manufacturing, oil and gas and food processing industries, manage and reduce energy use while generating conservation savings that benefit all BC Hydro customers.
Overall, BC Hydro saves roughly three dollars for every dollar that it invests in Power Smart programs because conservation reduces the need to build more generating capacity or import more electricity to meet British Columbia's electricity needs.
"This funding allowed us to move ahead with the major retrofit and see the benefits of energy conservation," said Levi Sampson, Nanaimo Forest Products Ltd., Harmac Pulp Mill president. "Energy conservation is one of our key business strategies and it makes good business sense since it enables us to reduce energy supply - one of our major costs of doing business."
Most industrial customers require large amounts of electricity for their operations. BC Hydro estimates that the industrial sector uses about one third of the total electricity consumed in B.C. each year. This means that the sector also has a significant opportunity to achieve savings - the industrial sector represents approximately 45 per cent of the annual Power Smart savings.
"I congratulate Nanaimo Forest Products for showing real leadership by demonstrating how smart energy management can conserve energy and reduce waste, in turn, generating significant energy savings," said Minister of Energy Steve Thomson. "These kinds of industrial initiatives will help us meet our province's clean energy goal. By 2020, we are determined to meet our target of 66 per cent of the province's incremental electricity needs through efficiency and conservation because this is the most cost-effective way to meet new demand."
In addition to significant financial incentives, Power Smart's Industrial Program offers a variety of funded initiatives to customers that provide them with an integrated approach focused on continuous energy improvement.
"The Power Smart Partners Industrial Program helps our industrial customers take advantage of their conservation opportunity through waste reduction, and at the same time allows them to improve their performance and achieve financial savings year-after-year," said Lisa Coltart, executive director of Power Smart and Customer Care for BC Hydro. "We applaud Nanaimo Forest Products' ongoing commitment to energy management and their participation in the Power Smart Partners program."